Donald Trump has fired acting United States Attorney General Sally Yates, who refused to enforce his Muslim ban executive order. Yates announced in a letter to Justice Department lawyers on Monday: “I am not convinced that the defense of the executive order is consistent with these responsibilities nor am I convinced that the executive order is lawful.”
In retaliation, Trump press secretary Sean Spicer announced later in the evening that Yates had been fired. On Twitter he wrote, “.@POTUS has named Dana Boente, US Attorney for the Eastern District of VA as Acting Attorney General. Sally Yates has been relieved.”
The Muslim ban enacted by Trump has been blasted by Democrats and a few Republicans as discriminatory, cruel, and possibly illegal.
Detentions of immigrants attempting to enter the United States were opposed by the ACLU, and massive demonstrations at multiple airports, cities, and the White House erupted in defense of admitting war refugees and their families to the United States.
In 1973, President Richard Nixon fired independent special prosecutor Archibald Cox, which led to the resignations of of Attorney General Elliot Richardson and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus in what is referred to as the “Sunday Night Massacre,” which was a pivotal moment in the Watergate Scandal that eventually ended his presidency in resignation and shame.
From the official White House statement on Yates’ firing: “Ms. Yates is an Obama Administration appointee who is weak on borders and very weak on illegal immigration.
It is time to get serious about protecting our country. Calling for tougher vetting for individuals travelling from seven dangerous places is not extreme. It is reasonable and necessary to protect our country.
Tonight, President Trump relieved Ms. Yates of her duties and subsequently named Dana Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, to serve as Acting Attorney General until Senator Jeff Sessions is finally confirmed by the Senate, where he is being wrongly held up by Democrat senators for strictly political reasons.
“I am honored to serve President Trump in this role until Senator Sessions is confirmed. I will defend and enforce the laws of our country to ensure that our people and our nation are protected,” said Dana Boente, Acting Attorney General.”